Valuing Compensation Payouts For An Ex-Partner Data Breach

If your personal data was sent to an ex-partner in a data breach, you might be wondering whether you can seek compensation and how much could be awarded. Throughout this guide, we discuss the eligibility criteria for data breach claims, the evidence you could provide to support your case, and how compensation in successful cases is calculated.  

ex-partner data breach

Valuing Compensation Payouts For An Ex-Partner Data Breach

Organisations have a responsibility to protect your personal data. They must adhere to data protection laws in order to keep your data safe when handling, processing, and storing it. If there was a failure to do so, and your personal data was sent to a former partner, this could have serious impacts on your finances and mental well-being. We provide examples of how this could happen later in our guide as well as the impact it could have.

Finally, we discuss how a No Win No Fee solicitor from our panel can help you with seeking data breach compensation.

Our advisors can provide further guidance on data breach compensation claims. They are available 24/7 and can answer your questions for free. You can get in touch by: 

  • Phoning us at 020 3870 4868.
  • Writing to us to discuss your potential claim online.
  • Replying to us in the live chat tab below.

Select A Section

  1. Valuing Compensation Payouts For An Ex-Partner Data Breach
  2. Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For An Ex-Partner Data Breach?
  3. How Could Personal Information Be Compromised In An Ex-Partner Data breach?
  4. What Evidence Could Help You To Make A Claim?
  5. Start Your Claim With A No Win No Fee Solicitor
  6. Further Guidance On Claiming For A Breach Of Your Data

Valuing Compensation Payouts For An Ex-Partner Data Breach

Compensation awarded after a successful personal data breach could address two kinds of damage.

Non-material damage refers to the psychological harm caused by a personal data breach. For example, if personal data is shared with an abusive ex-partner, this could lead to stress, anxiety, or the exacerbation of a pre-existing mental health condition, such as post-traumatic stress disorder. 

Those calculating the value of non-material damage can use the Judicial College Guidelines (JCG) to help them. This is a document of guideline compensation brackets for different injuries that we have used to assemble the table below.

Compensation Table

This table of compensation brackets should only be used as a guide. Also, please note that the top entry is not from the JCG.

Multiple very severe mental injuries alongside significant monetary losses Very Severe Up to £150,000+ There will be a very severe impact on the person’s mental health and they will have incurred substantial monetary losses, including loss of earnings, with a poor prognosis.
Mental Harm Severe £54,830 to £115,730 Marked difficulties coping with life, education and work as well as a marked impact on other areas of the person’s life, coupled with a very poor prognosis.
Moderately Severe £19,070 to £54,830 Similar problems to the bracket above but the prognosis will be better.
Moderate £5,860 to £19,070 A substantial improvement with a good prognosis.
Less Severe £1,540 to £5,860 Considered in the award are the extent to which sleep and daily activities are impacted, and how long the period of disability is.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Severe £59,860 to £100,670 All parts of the injured person’s life are seriously affected and permanent issues prevent functioning at pre-trauma levels.
Moderately Severe £23,150 to £59,860 The prognosis is better than that of severe cases due to the person showing some recovery and seeking help from a professional, but significant disability is likely to continue.
Moderate £8,180 to £23,150 Ongoing effects will not be grossly disabling and a significant recovery has been made.
Less Severe £3,950 to £8,180 The injured person will have largely recovered within a couple of years and only minor issues will persist for longer.

Could You Also Claim For Material Damage?

Material damage refers to the financial loss caused by a personal data breach. In the example of an ex-partner data breach, losses could include:

  • A loss of earnings from being unable to work due to stress or personal danger, or having to change jobs.
  • The cost of having to relocate.

Because of a Court of Appeal ruling following Vidal-Hall and others v. Google Inc. [2015], a claimant can claim for non-material or material damage independently, as well as being entitled to seek both together.

Please speak to our advisors if you want to know more about how data breach compensation is valued.

Am I Eligible To Claim Compensation For An Ex-Partner Data Breach?

Those responsible for protecting your personal data, which is information that can be used to identify you, are called:

  • A data controller, who determines how and why data is processed. They might also process the data themselves.
  • A data processor, who processes the data on behalf of the controller if they decide to outsource the task rather than doing it themselves. 

The Data Protection Act 2018 (DPA) and the UK General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), two pieces of data protection laws, set out obligations for data controllers and processors with regard to the processing, handling, and storing of your personal data.

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), is a UK independent body responsible for upholding information rights as well as ensuring data protection legislation is adhered to. They define a personal data breach as a security incident compromising the availability, confidentiality or integrity of personal data. 

With this in mind, the criteria required for a personal data breach claim include showing:

  • The data controller or processor failed to meet their obligations under data protection law.
  • It resulted in a breach that affected your personal data.
  • As a result, you suffered financial loss, psychological harm, or both.

Time Limits On Data Breach Claims

The general time limit for starting a data breach claim is six years as per the Limitation Act 1980. However, this is reduced to one year when the claim is against a public body.

Give us a call or get in touch online, and our advisors can explain the eligibility criteria for your case, including the applicable time limit, in further detail.

How Could Personal Information Be Compromised In An Ex-Partner Data Breach?

An ex-partner data breach can involve your personal information being sent to an ex-husband, ex-wife or other person you were previously in a relationship with.

As mentioned, personal data is information that can be used to identify you either directly or indirectly when used in conjunction with other information. Examples include your name, phone number, postal address, and email address. 

There is also special category data. This refers to especially sensitive personal data that requires extra protection and can include data concerning health or revealing a person’s racial or ethnic origin.

Examples of how this could be sent to an ex-partner include:

  • A social worker may send a letter confirming information about your new postal address to an abusive ex-partner in a human error data breach. As a result, you are caused stress and anxiety and you and your children need to relocate for your safety.
  • The school your children previously attended notify your ex-partner of their new school. This causes you and your children psychological harm.

If you want to discuss your specific case and find out what to do if your data has been breached, please contact our team on the number above.

What Evidence Could Help You To Make A Claim?

There are several pieces of evidence you could gather to support your claim for an ex-partner data breach. Some of the steps you could take to collect evidence include:

  • If a personal data breach puts a data subject’s rights and freedoms at risk, the data controller must make them aware without undue delay. The notice letter sent to you by the data controller revealing the cause of the breach and identifying affected data, could be used as evidence.
  • You can contact the data controller directly if they have not reached out to you and you believe a breach has compromised your personal data. Any other communication between you and them, such as emails or letters, can form part of the body of evidence for your case.
  • Should the organisation fail to give a meaningful response within three months of you contacting them, you could then raise a complaint to the ICO. They might investigate and findings from this investigation could help support your case.
  • Evidence of a letter sent to your ex-partner containing your personal data, such as a copy of the letter.
  • Medical records outlining mental harm caused by the breach. 
  • Bank statements or another document that shows any financial losses.

A solicitor from our panel could help you collect evidence for your claim, provided you have valid grounds to proceed. Call the number above to learn more about how they could assist you in building a strong case.

Start Your Claim With A No Win No Fee Solicitor

An experienced solicitor from our panel could help you navigate the data breach claim process and offer guidance on seeking compensation following an ex-partner data breach. They could offer these helpful services under a Conditional Fee Agreement, a form of No Win No Fee contract where you pay nothing for the solicitor’s services:

  • Initially, at the start of the claim;
  • During the claim;
  • If the claim loses.

Your solicitor collects a success fee if your case wins. This is a percentage of the compensation awarded to you that they can take. However, this percentage has a cap due to The Conditional Fee Agreements Order 2013 ensuring you keep the majority of the awarded compensation.

Get In Touch With Our Team

An expert solicitor could take your case if you have valid grounds to make an ex-partner data breach claim. You can get a free assessment from an advisor to find out if you have an eligible claim. You would also have the opportunity to ask any other questions about claiming for a data breach. There is no charge and no obligation to get in touch, so please reach out today through any of these routes:

Further Guidance On Claiming For A Breach Of Your Data

Here are some additional guides that could help you:

These external resources may also be of interest:

Thank you for reading our guide about when you could claim for an ex-partner data breach and how compensation payouts are valued in successful claims. If you have any other questions, please contact an advisor on the number above.